For purification of the mind, body and the protection of the child, all the deities are invoked in water through the chanting of the manthras. This water is poured over the child, during the udhakashanthi.
A ceremony performed to obtain the blessings of the ancestors of the family before the festive occasion of the Upanayanam.
The Upanayanam is a vedic ritual with many samskaarams or acts (which include wearing of the "yagnopaveetham", learning of the ‘Gayathri Manthram’, etc.) It entitles one to learn and recite the vedas and perform rituals thereby uplifting the person's life.
This is the core ceremony of the upanayanam ritual. The father places the sacred thread across the child's left shoulder under the advice of the Guru. The sacred thread consists of three strands signifying Brahma, Vishnu, and Siva (Saraswathi Lakshmi & Savithri). This also represents Gnana, Karma and Bhakti. Next, Moonji a girdle made out of a munja grass is tied around the waist of the child. This is to protect his purity & keep evil away.
After the "Yagnopaveethadhaarana", the boy is fed along with other brahmacharis in a process of socialization into a new atmosphere. The boy's mother feeds him before brahmacharya with 5 different sweets made by her.
The Gayathri Manthra is the supreme manthra and protects those who recite it. The boy's father becomes his guru and whispers this powerful "Gayathri Manthra" into his tight ear under a tent of silk cloth. The Gayathri Manthra is chanted for strength, good health, sharp memory with improved comprehension & long life. It is only after learning the manthra that the student is accepted as "DWIJA"(twice horn).
The child prays to Agni, the God of Fire, and is thus blessed with long life, intellect, courage and good health.
The boy is to be taken outside and shown the Soorya, the Sun God. The assumption here is that he will be protected by the Sun God.
The boy symbolically asks for alms of rice from his MOTHER and other married ladies. This is an important event to make one humble, polite, and control of ego.
After upanayanam the boy seeks the blessing of all the elders present by saluting them on their feet with sashtaanga namaskaram. After namaskaram, the child introduces himself by his rishi, parampara, gothram, suthram and name step by step. The first person chosen for abivathanam is one's own mother! one who has introduced him into this world.